This week I was alerted to a post on the YouTube blog by paidContent.org (a must read for you content folks, by the way). It’s about YouTube’s program to put $5 million into a small group of partners and video producers to help ‘up the ante” more with high quality video. YouTube describes the process as follows
- YouTube is identifying eligible partners based on factors such as video views, subscribers, growth rate, audience engagement and production expertise
- Selected partners are contacted by YouTube and invited to submit a Grant proposal
- Proposals are evaluated by YouTube based on signals which include projected performance, distribution plan, marketing plan, cost requirements and appeal to advertisers
- If approved, funds are transferred to the partner so they can get started on their project
Smart move by YouTube. As competition from the Vimeo’s and Hulu’s of the world increases YouTube needs to find ways to keep people dedicated to their platform. Grant money to help video producers get better is a good way.
Of course, there will be naysayers who say that $5 million is a drop in the bucket but at least YouTube is creating the bucket. I don’t see others doing this (if you know of another company doing this please let us know).
So while YouTube will always be the home of stupid human tricks on steroids amateur video it may also be the home to high quality alternatives to the swill that TV networks and Hollywood studios produce these days.
Kudos to YouTube. It will be interesting to see just what this $5 million can do for the world of amateur video. Actually, let’s hope this removes the amateur from that title as video content producers discover ways to make a living producing something that has more thought and meaning than special effects.